TORONTO, Feb. 1 /CNW/ -
The Honourable Tony Clement
Minister of Industry
C.D. Howe Building
235 Queen Street
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0H5
Dear Minister Clement:
On behalf of the 107,000 members of the Canadian Federation of
Independent Business (CFIB), I am writing to express our strong concern
with a recent decision of the CRTC regarding usage based billing for
internet services (CRTC2011-44). The effect of this decision, should
cabinet not overturn it, would be significant for small businesses in
Canada, particularly as they come out of the recent recession. The
vast majority of smaller firms rely on reasonably priced internet
services to help them run their operations.
While all small businesses would face fee increases for internet access
and usage, small, independent Internet Service Providers would be
especially hard hit in their ability to offer reasonably priced and
creative services. In addition, many of the most innovative firms in
Canada - including the high-tech sector - would face potentially
dramatic increases in their costs.
On the whole, small firms would be directly harmed in their ability to
compete both in Canada and on the world stage. We understand that the
comparable cost per gigabyte would likely increase to a rate far higher
than with comparable companies in the United States. If we are to
compete and continue to lead the G8, this decision would make it all
the more difficult for Canada to do so.
As government is counting on entrepreneurs and small business owners to
create jobs coming out of the recession, a large fee increase is the
last thing they need. Moving ahead would be a serious setback for
Canada in 2011 - recently declared by your government as the 'Year of
We hope you consider the implications of this decision on the small
business community in Canada and overturn CRTC 2011-44.
We look forward to your response.
Sr. Vice-President, Legislative Affairs
SOURCE CANADIAN FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS
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